After 100 minutes of scoreless play, the Hays High boys soccer team settled for a 0-0 tie against Junction City on Tuesday at FHSU Soccer Stadium.
The Indians couldn’t capitalize on their fair share of scoring opportunities but held off some quality chances from Junction City late in regulation and in the overtime period to salvage the tie.
Hays High coach Silas Hibbs said the Indians (2-9-1) have been battling to overcome obstacles during a trying season.
“We’ve had a little adversity with some injuries, a lot of injuries, and we’re a young team,” Hibbs said. “But that’s not an excuse. Every year there’s adversity. Every year there’s something unexpected. I think the true test of a team’s character is how they respond.
“We have some young guys that are forced to step up into some big-time roles and they want to do well and they’re kind of hard on themselves. But this one is kind of a loss in our minds. Our mental preparedness could have been better.”
Hibbs said the Indians are looking to build chemistry on the field.
“I think a lot of it is trust with one another as teammates,” Hibbs said. “We’ve had to cycle some guys on and off because of injuries, and guys get comfortable playing with certain guys in positions. But I think we could have played significantly better as a unit.”
A bright spot for the Indians was the performance of sophomore Adam King in goal.
“That was Adam’s first start in goal,” Hibbs said. “Adam’s played a variety of positions on the field. I was proud of him for getting the shutout. He made a great save in the second overtime and that was big for us. He did well. He stepped up big for us.”
Hibbs said freshman Jordan Timkin and sophomore Jeppe Selvejer also turned in solid performances.
The game’s location was moved from Hays High to FHSU Soccer Stadium’s turf field because of rain. It rained for most of the first half but had stopped by the second half.
Hays High will be back in action on Thursday for a 4 p.m. home game with Liberal.
“I think for us (a focus is) just re-establishing that trust with some of the new players that are playing on the field,” Hibbs said. “We’re a little nicked up right now, so getting healthy, too. We have a whole dead week the second week of October, which will be good. At the end of the day, it’s just how we respond to a little curve ball here today. I have no doubt the boys will come back and get better from this; it’s just humbling in the meantime. We can use it to sulk and be sad or we can use it to fuel us and make us better.”